Indeed, it does seem unfair. And undoubtedly that's why the time on the wait list has jumped so much for Richmond -- people are slotted in ahead of the line. And if I have things figured out more or less correctly, the lengthening of the wait list occurred around the time Medweight got going (it's a relatively new program).
It does make some sense in that candidates for the surgery who have attended Medweight are very well prepared, and I imagine Richmond really likes that. As for me, I feel vindicated, as Dr. Zentner neglected to send in my referral to Richmond and then wouldn't rectify the situation for me. I also might add that I travel quite a distance to get to Coquitlam; it's a whole day for me to attend the 90-minute group medical visits, so I feel I deserve to jump the line!
In the meantime the wait list for Victoria is much shorter than it used to be, so there's still that option for those who live on the Island or are willing to travel -- and MSP does pay for the ferries. Also, Dr Pewarchuk, who now heads the program there, is very cool. He is also exploring options for working with patients through online technology. I think there's great promise there, although people obviously would still have to travel to Victoria for the surgery itself.
Thanks for the advice about the post bariatric group. It does seem unfair that there are two systems for referrals, with such different wait times. It's not an even playing field for those who don't know about mwm or who live outside of the Lower Mainland.
No "maybe" -- things have definitely changed. As of about a year ago, she is no longer with the Victoria program, instead running her own Revolution Medical Clinic.
You have confirmed what I had guessed -- that she has a similar arrangement with Richmond as Dr. Lyon has. Interesting that she's also referring to Burnaby; I had noticed there was a doctor (or doctors?) there listed on the provincial wait list website but couldn't find anything about a program. I guess Zentner's is it.
Too bad you're allergic to Saxenda (aka Victoza or liraglutide), but at least you don't have to deal with the fact that your free supply will run out. I hope you can pass on your free samples to somebody who can't afford to pay for it.
Not many people (including doctors) know about the Medical Weight Management Centre in Coquitlam that Dr. Lyon directs. I just chanced upon it in my desperation to avoid having surgery in Victoria and in the hope of it helping me lose the weight on my own. It's clear that I can't, so I was just thrilled to learn, as I worked my way through their program, that if they deem you to be a good candidate for surgery, it is indeed expedited at Richmond.
I still have some hoops to jump through, but it looks like I'll be having my surgery within 4 months. I've been on the fence for a long time, but at this point I'm more than ready.
I'm concerned that the MWM Centre may be trying to serve too many people. They are seeing hundreds of patients despite not being well-known, and I sense that the staff are very overwhelmed. I'm glad I got in now and not later.
OnlineAnnie, I hope you know that you can do their post bariatric support group. You don't have to have gone through their program to be part of that. I'm not sure if Dr. Lyon himself facilitates that (I believe he does). He is a good guy. Really knows his stuff and is respectful and supportive.
I believe that it is about the same for Richmond. But I do know that compliance with your CPAP therapy if you have sleep apnea including keeping a record, logging what you put into your mouth, exercising regularly, and making some lifestyle changes like slowly stopping with smoking, alcohol etc. and also seeing a obesity counselor, or something like this MAY help with some of this. They need to see that you're starting to do the process. Prior to the orientation session, you can be doing this, so when they see you at your first individual follow up appointment, they can see that you have been dedicated at following through, and then it will take you a bit shorter. Compliance is a big issue with how you're able to adapt to the changes that are necessary after the weight loss surgery! The weight loss surgery is just a tool. It is not a miracle fix, so you need to have an effective support network, and practice lifestyle changes BEFORE you have surgery.
I had a lower BMI and live in Canada. There are places that do it with lower BMI. Have you shown that you're able to keep a journal, exercise etc.? If you do, and you have been with an obesity specialist etc. it may be possible if you have all the co-morbidities like sleep apnea, hypertension etc.
HW:330 - GW:150 - MW:118-125
RW:190 - CW:130
I just had my surgery 2 1/2 weeks ago. I had my referral sent to Richmond June 2015 - so close to a four year wait. But when I started meeting others who had gone through Dr. Lyons' Centre for Functional Medicine they said they had started with him only one year prior and had been expedited. That information was too late learned for me, but hopefully can help out someone here on this site.